Understanding what is going on with your Mental Health is important. Acknowledging the difference between Anxiety attack and Panic attack is required so that the treatment is done accordingly.
Understand the Difference between Anxiety Attack and Panic Attack below.
What is Anxiety?
We all have things that we’re afraid of. Whether it’s seeing a spider, giving a speech, or jumping out of an airplane, some things just make our knees shake, hearts race, and our mouths dry up. Fear is the emotional and physiological alarm that goes off in your body, signaling to you that there is an immediate threat that needs to be dealt with.
Anxiety is the emotional and physiological response we have in anticipation of future threats (such as, “I’m nervous that if I leave my cabin there might be a bear out there”). Anxiety can make you hyper-aware of your surroundings and is associated with muscle tension and being on the lookout for possible danger. The goal of feeling anxious is to avoid future danger.
Anxiety attacks usually occur suddenly and without warning. Sometimes there’s an obvious trigger—getting stuck in an elevator, for example, or thinking about the big speech you have to give—but in other cases, the attacks come out of the blue. Anxiety attacks usually peak within 10 minutes, and they rarely last more than 30 minutes. But during that short time, you may experience terror so severe that you feel as if you’re about to die or totally lose control.
The physical symptoms of anxiety attacks are themselves so frightening that many people think they’re having a heart attack. After an anxiety attack is over, you may worry about having another one, particularly in a public place where help isn’t available or you can’t easily escape.
Symptoms of an anxiety attack include
Surge of overwhelming panic
Feeling of losing control or going crazy Heart palpitations or chest pain Feeling like you’re going to pass out Trouble breathing or choking sensation Hyperventilation Hot flashes or chills Trembling or shaking Nausea or stomach cramps Feeling detached or unreal.
What is Panic?
Panic is identified as a disorder and is related strongly to biological and psychological factors and their interactions. A view described one of its incidences as a specific psychological vulnerability of people to interpret normal physical sensations in a catastrophic way.
Panic in social psychology is considered infectious since it can spread to a multitude of people and those affected are expected to act irrationally as a consequence. Psychologists identify different types of this panic event with slightly varying descriptions and these include mass hysteria, mass psychosis, mass panic, and social contagion.
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A panic attack is an intense wave of fear characterized by its unexpectedness and debilitating, immobilizing intensity. Your heart pounds, you can’t breathe, and you may feel like you’re dying or going crazy. Panic attacks often strike out of the blue, without any warning, and sometimes with no clear trigger. They may even occur when you’re relaxed or asleep.
You may experience one or more panic attacks, yet be otherwise perfectly happy and healthy. Or your panic attacks may occur as part of another disorder, such as panic disorder, social phobia, or depression.
Regardless of the cause, panic attacks are treatable. There are strategies you can use to reduce or eliminate the symptoms of panic, regain your confidence, and take back control of your life.
Here is an official definition from the DSM:
“A panic attack is a sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause.”
Panic attack symptoms include:
Shortness of breath or hyperventilation
Heart palpitations or racing heart Chest pain or discomfort trembling or shaking Choking feeling. Feeling unreal or detached from your surroundings Sweating Nausea or upset stomach Feeling dizzy, light-headed, or faint Numbness or tingling sensations Hot or cold flashes Fear of dying, losing control, or going crazy.
It’s important to seek help if you’re starting to avoid certain situations because you’re afraid of having a panic attack. The truth is that panic attacks are highly treatable.
In fact, many people are panic free within just 5 to 8 treatment sessions.